This picture makes me cry!

This picture makes me cry!
Thought it was time to change my picture

Friday, November 9, 2007

Facing Facts....I'm back where I started....

Hi all. Let me start by saying that this post isn't a vent or a bitch session or a pity party. It is the cold hard truth and it's something that I need to admit to myself. I need to fess up and face the facts......then I need to fix it. I know that I don't have to go back in time for you all but I need to put this down for me so forgive my selfishness and let me reflect for just a few.

It started last night when I began reading a book by Oprah called "Make The Connection". In this book she publishes entries from her journal and is very candid about her love for food and hatred for herself. I was completely absorbed in her writing and (not unlike a zillion other self help books have done for me)a light turned on. The "AHA" moment set in and I started reflecting on where I am and where I've been......being honest with yourself isn't easy and can be quite humiliating. Even now it makes me cry - sitting here typing with tears rolling down my face because of my wacked out food issues. My inability to just be semi-normal when it comes to life, exercise, food and my relationship with all 3. I keep going over the same question - I'm at the gym 5 or 6 times a week but I'm not losing - I'm asking this rhetorical question more to make myself feel better than anything. I KNOW why my pants are still tight and it isn't because my ass lifted - I'm totally compensating for my exercise because of my eating habits. Now I will say that honestly, I track everything and there hasn't been one day in the last 5 weeks when I have peaked over 1800 calories and according to FitDay, I am burning 2400 to 3400 calories a day (depending on exercise) so what is the problem......well here goes. In all it ugly, humiliating, disgusting glory - here it is - the truth.

The truth is - God why is this so hard to confess - that I rarely eat during the day......I try, I really really try and sometimes I succeed in getting a salad or some cottage cheese, especially before a workout but other than that I save up all my calories for dinner - I know it's sick. This happened over the last few months, slowly evolving into what I feel like could be considered some kind eating disorder. My routine is workout - head home - pack lunches & gym bag - cook family's dinner for the next day - wash my face - put on my pajamas - take my Melatonin and then fix myself something to eat. When my dinner is done at around 10:00, I take it to the table or the bedroom (a place where I don't have to deal with anyone) and I eat in peace and quiet or in front of the tv. The problem with this is a) because I am starving I eat way too much - thus why I have to wear my pajamas to eat - b) I don't eat bad food, hell I don't even go out to eat so you can imagine how much cauliflower and egg whites one would have to consume to hit 1400 calories (I do get my milk, cottage cheese, protein shakes in so that helps) - c) I eat and then immediately pour a glass of milk and then go to bed because by that time I can barely hold my eyes open thanks to the medicine. So because I go to bed on a full stomach and after having a huge glass of water then milk - I am up 3 or 4 times a night and usually at some point will have an apple or something like that. So that is the physical aspect of it but the mental part is even worse.......I'm like a junkie, every single day I think I'll do better and every single day I fail. I eat when I'm not hungry because I feel entitled - it is my reward for not eating all day (in fact I'm generally not hungry during the day so it isn't like I'm suffering). Somehow my dinner has moved from physical nourishment to emotional nourishment....I eat alone and somehow have associated that with "me" time - I get excited at the prospect of actually eating dinner because it isn't time that I have to deal with anything......why can't my time at the gym serve as "me" time - partly because I'm doing it because I feel obligated due to my declining health habits - with food there are no strings attached - nothing is expected or required. The husband is busy doing his thing , the kid is in bed and thus there is no one requesting anything, passing judgement or even speaking to me.........basically no one is watching and I can eat until I pass out......this is really no different from my old eating habits but now I chose to binge on healthy food - well guess what sister, healthy food will make you fat too!

I know all the tricks of the trade and I really thought that I had nipped this in the bud......I thought that this demon was dead and gone - I was the new and improved Stephanie - I was a Barbie - I was okay with who I was and I didn't need food........I think I got too comfortable, I let little things come back into play and I let them slide until now I have a full blown issue AGAIN. I wish I could say that I wasn't conscious of my decisions to eat so much but I am. Every time I sit down to eat I think "listen to your body" "being stuffed feels horrible" - but it doesn't take long for me to shut that bitch up and shove her in the back of the closet, allowing the food monster to come out.

People see pictures of me smiling and tell me what an inspiration I am.....if they only knew the truth. The struggle, the heartache, the burden, the beatdown it is.......then they would know that I am failing - rebelling - jumping off the wagon and the sucky part is that for all my failures, I'm not even enjoying shit that I love like mexican food and ice cream - I'm wasting my failures on fucking cauliflower and green beans!! I can't even fail properly!!!

So now that I've written that all down, I feel better - okay not really, I feel like shit but I have to suck it up and move on. So I have decided on a plan - as bad as I hate frozen dinners that's where I'm headed. I think a week of frozen meals will help me get my portions under control, make it easy for me to eat right after the gym (no eating so late) and take the stress out of food. I really really really need a break from carrying this baggage around......I've never seen a headline about a women going mental over food but I could potentially start that trend. I'm tired of crying over egg whites and failure and stressing about carrot sticks and calories.....I feel like a prisoner - I feel like a damn maniac half the time. I want to get back to living my life and living includes eating like a normal person. I don't want to look in the mirror and see a failure anymore - I want to be honest with myself - no more obsessing about my pannus or sodium intake. Your health is 90% diet and 10% exercise - I'm going to get my diet back on track, not to lose this 15 pounds but to find me again.

Thanks for listening and for being there in blogland.


Jo said...

Wow. This why I love reading your blog. It makes me realize that what we all are embarking on here is a life change. Not just to lose the weight, but to work to make our entire lives healthier. If I lost my full 71 lbs and reverted to old habits, would I really have learned anything?

Thank you so much for your candidness and sharing what you feel is holding you back. Scary to think, but yes, I see the danger in your relationship with food. It does, honestly, remind me of an alcoholic's relationship - drinking alone and to fill an emotional void. It is so not healthy with all of the exercising you do. I hope you can find some way to get yourself back to good daily eating habits. You are far from a failure - you constantly see things that you can or should change and face them head-on. No failure can do that. You can get through this and we'll all be here cheering you on.


Scale Junkie said...

Steph, this whole process is a learning process. If you want to read a good book, read You On A Diet, it really does a good job of explaining how the body uses food and why breakfast is so good for you. It also talks about the importance of fueling the body before exercise, something you said you don't do but its important to do.

Like Jo said, it reminds me of a functioning alcoholic I worked with. No one knew she was an alcoholic. She came to work on time every day, never missed a day, did outstanding work but she would go home and drink a bottle of vodka every night to fill the emotional void.

You can fix this Steph, yes its going to require some adjustments and like you said, you know what to do but you can get through this just like you got through the battle to lose 245 pounds. Like it or not, even if you think yo are failing, you are an inspiration because you aren't perfect. If you were perfect, I'd never look to you for inspiration. But because you are human and can admit what you do wrong, I find that to be very inspirational!
I'm here to cheer you on!! We can get through this together.

noelle said...

My story is so much less extreme than yours, but I still deal with my food issues. Maybe part of me always will. For me, it is growth to recoognize that I am being crazy with my food and to try to deal with the other crap that's under the surface.

I hope you can make your peace with food. And I hope you can make your peace with yourself, too, hon.

Kate said...

When I first started weight watchers, I would literally save all my points for dinner and snacks afterwards, I would eat the 23 or 24 points I had between 530 and 10p at night, all of them!

At first I lost fine, and then I got to the last 10, and my body realized what I was doing. Since then, I've been trying to focus on eating breakfast, lunch and a few snacks in between. Teaching myself that I can sit on the couch at night and eat 22 points worth of food isn't fixing the habits that got me fat in the first that is now my goal, fix those habits. Hell I'm not losing much weight, but at least I won't be gaining it (in theory)! Right?

Hang in there, it's all a battle, and it's one we will all fight together :)

WeightBGone said...


You are always so honest and face problems head on and because of this you will succeed. You are very aware of what you need to do to get back on track.

You are no where near being a failure you are capable of seeing problems and correcting them before they take over your life.

I am here for your as you've always supported me. Hang in there my friend you will gain control once again!!!

Candace said...

Steph, I started reading this yesterday and had to come back today. I have thought over the past 24 hrs of all of the things I could write or say. I think you know that exercising without eating is only burning muscle, and that eating is a way to fuel our lives. I have come to care for you very much over the past several months and know you know what to do, so I will pray that you will make the right choices and find some peace in that.
Love you, Candace

wendz said...

Hi Steph - first time that I have read your blog. You sound totally amazing and I applaud what you have achieved. Please don't be too hard on yourself - you are only human and things will slide once in a while. Best wishes all the way from South Africa.

Jynell said...


I know you can do this Steph! It takes a lot of guts to write that all out & admit your struggles and failures. However, that is also the first step in making the changes & overcoming your obstacles. You know where to find me if you need/want to talk more!

Weigh to go..lets see said...

Wow, just read this and reminds me some what of the way I was as well, of course the situation now is a little different, but your still an inspiration to me becaus eyour beautiful and smart and the detrmined...The fact the you wrote all this down shows all that..You have made the first step and although I don't personally know you I know by reading your post and seeing your pics and so on that you CAN & WILL do this...I can't help but think back to the post you wrote on my blog, wow you and other I have meet through blogs is what keeps me strong...Just know that You have alot of people backing you and you can do it sweetie...